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New York Personal Injury Law Blog

Single-car accidents and poor road conditions

As the temperatures drop, road conditions throughout the country worsen. Each year, new potholes form suddenly and other elements of our roadways struggle to remain stable in winter conditions.

While our roads here in New York are not the worst in the country by any stretch of the imagination, they require near-constant maintenance just to remain usable by the thousands and thousands of motorists who travel them each and every day.

Why mortality rates spike on Thanksgiving

According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Thanksgiving is the deadliest holiday in the U.S. In 2012, for example, there were 764 fatal crashes over the Thanksgiving holiday, followed by 694 on Labor Day and 654 on Christmas. Thanksgiving also saw over 50,000 non-fatal crashes that year. Residents of New York should know that the causes behind this seasonal spike in the mortality rate are mostly preventable.

The NHTSA has found that 60 percent of those killed in 2012 were not wearing a seatbelt, while 40 percent of the fatalities involved drunk drivers. Besides wearing a seat belt and not driving drunk, the agency has several precautionary tips for drivers. They should make sure their tires are properly inflated and that their windshield wipers work. They should take into account weather, traffic, and road conditions before heading out and allow themselves plenty of time so that they don't rush.

FDA links 7 deaths to faulty EpiPens

Anaphylaxis is a severe, and possibly life-threatening, allergic reaction that can occur just seconds after an individual has been exposed to an allergen. Immediate treatment is crucial in these situations, and many New York residents who suffer from serious allergies rely on devices like the EpiPen to deliver measured doses of epinephrine quickly and simply. EpiPens are designed to be easy to use for those with no medical training, but they have been connected with seven fatalities so far in 2017 according to the Food and Drug Administration.

In addition to the seven deaths, the FDA says that 35 individuals required hospital treatment after their EpiPens malfunctioned. The pharmaceutical company that manufactures the EpiPen and EpiPen Jr. says that the defect responsible for the failures is extremely rare and problems should be expected when medical devices are used by people who have not been properly trained, but the FDA data reveals a worrying increase in EpiPen failures during the last few years.

Do you know how to file a construction accident claim?

Working in construction is always potentially dangerous even if you take the proper safety precautions. Unfortunately, when construction accidents do occur, they are often fairly severe. If you suffer an injury on a construction site, you may have significant medical expenses and may even miss work, costing you income.

You may have the right to file an injury claim to recover for your losses. Pursuing a successful injury claim may prove to be difficult if you are not already familiar with the process and how to deal with the various parties involved, such as your employer's human resources department, insurance providers or medical care professionals.

NHTSA faces hurdles in regulating driverless car safety

New York motorists who are eager to learn how self-driving cars are progressing should know that there are currently some hurdles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has stated, in a notice that it will make public by the end of November, that further input will be needed on what research to conduct before it can create safety regulations for such vehicles.

The NHTSA carries many responsibilities, now that a Senate committee has approved a bill granting exemptions to the makers of self-driving cars. The minimum requirement is that automakers deploy up to 80,000 self-driving cars annually within three years. In September, the U.S. House of Representatives also approved a measure intended to speed up driverless car manufacturing.

Smartphones and traffic accidents

Most drivers in New York strive to be responsible while on the road. This means obeying traffic laws and refraining from the use of drugs and alcohol which can impair sound judgment and reaction times. However, the use of smartphones may be leading to an increase in accidents and fatalities.

In fact, statistics show that traffic deaths in 2016 were up 14.4 percent from 2014, with many of the victims being pedestrians. The numbers have dismayed road safety experts as the U.S. had previously seen several years of declining fatalities. One explanation is the increased use of smartphones.

NHTSA releases data on car crash deaths in 2016

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration stated that last year, 37,461 people were killed in car crashes in the U.S., marking a nine-year high from the 41,259 killed in 2007. Residents of New York and the nation are alarmed, and some look to the future of self-driving vehicles as a solution.

Bad driving choices appear to be the culprit of the increase in fatalities. Speeding deaths increased by 4 percent, DUI fatalities rose by 1.7 percent, and deaths attributed to seatbelt neglect rose by 4.6 percent. There was also a 5.1 percent increase in motorcycle deaths and a 9 percent jump in pedestrian deaths.

Beware of winter weather dangers on the worksite

Warm summer days have largely given way to blustery fall weather. Before we know it, we'll be amid the sub-freezing temperatures of New York winter weather. While many of those who live and work in New York are already looking forward to pulling out their favorite winter coats and scarf collection, those who work in construction are digging through closets for hand and feet warmers or favorite pairs of cold-weather work gloves.

Working manual labor jobs, especially construction, in the colder months means a host of safety issues that the summer months don't bring. If you work in construction, it is crucial that you remain safe this winter, while still giving your all to the job.

Construction workers' deaths prompt legislative action

Construction workers in New York face a number of hazards on the job that can even be life-threatening. In September 2017, two construction workers fell to their deaths, sparking renewed calls for legislative crackdowns on job sites and developers that fail to provide sufficient protection for workers on the job.

Carlos' Law has been proposed to strengthen criminal penalties for managers at construction sites who fail to meet safety standards leading to death or serious personal injuries for construction workers. The bill, which was pursued before in the state Assembly but failed to pass the Senate, is named for a construction worker who died on a job site in 2015.

Mental, visual and manual distracted driving

Drivers in New York may hear the term "distracted driving" and think of texting while driving. Though texting behind the wheel has fueled discussion and changed laws about distracted driving, there are other types of distracted driving that people may engage in without even realizing that what they're doing is dangerous. Distracted driving can be broken down into three types: cognitive, manual and visual. All are equally dangerous, and some of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving involve some combination of different types.

Cognitive distraction is mental distraction. It could mean being preoccupied with thoughts that keep a driver's mind off their driving or even being engaged in conversation with a passenger. Listening to music or audio books while driving can also increase the likelihood of cognitive distraction.

  • $2.05 Million Settlement Mother of Two Struck and Killed by Motorist

    StolzenbergCortelli LLP recently resolved a heart breaking wrongful death action. The mother of two was struck and killed, while she crossed a roadway.

  • $1.1 Million Settlement StolzenbergCortelli LLP Settles Trip Over Nail Case

    Terrence and Howard settled a trip and fall case for $1,100,000. In this case, our client (a resident of Brooklyn) was a cleaning lady who was hired to clean the newsroom of the Wall Street Journal.

  • $750,000 Verdict Jane and John Doe v. Defendant Driver

    The names are redacted for privacy reasons. In this automobile accident case, the female plaintiff was injured and suffered seriously debilitating injuries.

  • $525,000 Settlement Injured When the Trailer upon which He was Standing Collapsed

    Our client was a teamster, working at a concrete plant in Westchester, when he was seriously injured. At the time, he was standing on a trailer, which is colloquially known as a "low boy", when the wooden slats upon which he was standing, collapsed.

  • $457,500 Settlement Car Accident Victim With Pre-Existing Neck Injury

    Settled a client's case for $457,500. The client suffered a significant cervical spine injury requiring a fusion surgery.He was t-boned by a car exiting Purdy's farmer and the Fish in Somers, New York.

  • $450,000 Settlement StolzenbergCortelli LLP Settles Construction Accident Case

    Howard Stolzenberg settled a case for $450,000 where a construction worker was forced to use an exterior fire escape ladder to access the top of the building all while carrying a one gallon bucket of paint. The worker fell and fractured his ankle.

  • $100,000 Settlement Teenager Hit From Behind

    We just settled a case for a young girl who was injured when she was struck from behind while waiting at a red light at an intersection near the entrance to the Saw Mill in Yonkers. She had hip and shoulder surgery.

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